Welcome to steveczajka.posterous.com, a blog to share my portfolio of work. I have been performing freelance calligraphy and digital art since the 1980s.
- Art (for framing / canvas stretch)
- Graphic Design
- Brochure Layout
- Magazine Layout / Desktop Publishing
- Brand Identity
- Font Development
- Graphic Design Software Training
- Oh, yeah and did I mention Calligraphy
My work has appeared in various applications such as: Logo Design, Website Graphics, Certificates, Invitations, Poems, Music Lyrics, Scrolls, Frames, Signs, Book Covers, Program Covers, Digital Wallpapers, Stock Photography / Stock Images, and various other creative uses of calligraphy and digital art.
Each calligraphy piece starts as an authentic pen and ink hand penned work, then they are scanned and processed with an array of digital effects. My digital environment includes packages such as: Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Corel Draw/Photopaint, GIMP, Inkscape, Scribus, Visio and others.
My GIMP & Inkscape Tutorials
On this site I also offer GIMP tutorials as well as Inkscape tutorials as this software is free and accessible to everyone. These tutorials are intended to help others to learn how the various pieces were created. Many of the techniques I have learned have been from others, and I hope to share back into this incredible digital arts open community.
I am a resident of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. I am a Geographic Information Systems Professional by day, and do this freelance calligraphy and digital art in my spare time. I have been influenced by the training and works of: professional calligrapher Anthony Hostovecky and professional sign painter Stan Czajka (my father).
My Role as Managing Editor for GIMP Software Magazine
GIMP is an amazing image editing software package similar to Adobe® Photoshop®, but licensed as free and open source for the Mac, PC, and Linux operating systems. The latest version of GIMP (2.8) has been downloaded over 6.5 Million times in just two months, so this is a huge community of skilled and passionate users.
GIMP Magazine features the amazing works created from this world wide community. Photography, digital arts, graphic arts, web design, industrial design, tips & tricks, step by step tutorials, master classes, help desk questions, product reviews and so much more are showcased and explored in this quarterly publication. This publication is available for free and is licensed Creative Commons CC-AT-SA 2.5.
My role as managing editor for GIMP Magazine is to provide editorial direction in the stories and content that we feature in our magazine. And this is a difficult role considering the amazing content that we receive from our community.
I provide overall coordination with the project and within our team of seven, including internal and external communications. I run the social media accounts for this project. And the most fun part of my role on this project is providing art direction, and layout services (in Scribus, like InDesign®). I am part of an amazing team of people who produce this publication voluntarily, and we are having fun doing this! I am also connected to incredibly talented artists and photographers from all over the world. Who knows what this will lead to?
My Calligraphic Arts Guild of Toronto Role
I am also a new member of a non-profit group called the Calligraphic Arts Guild of Toronto (http://cagt.posterous.com/pages/gallery). I am a part of the executive as the lead on the Communications and Marketing Committee. I have also designed, created and now administrate the Guild's blog and associated webpage at: http://cagt.posterous.com and http://www.neilsonparkcreativecentre.com/resident-groups/cag . This is an exciting role for me as I am surrounded by excellence in calligraphy and design.
My Freelance Work at The Keystone Design Union
Recently I was invited to join the KDU. Founded in 2003, the Keystone Design Union is a Design & Marketing Consultancy based in Brooklyn, New York, USA. This is creative design at the highest levels. The KDU clients include: Nike, Adidas, Reebok, K2, Adobe, Linkin Park, SVSV, Diesel, Hennessy, MTV2, Hershey’s, Samsung and many other high-end brands. It is really a privilege for me to be a part of this organization. View my profile at: http://thekdu.net/steveczajka/
My Work on LetterCults Best of 2011
My Artwork Licenses
I greatly foster and encourage the use of the creative commons license. Many of my pieces are available under a creative commons license, while some may be copyright (for specific reasons). If you want to use one of my pieces as stock photography on a website, or blog, etc... I can upon request provide you with a special license and an unsigned image. I can also provide graphic artists with high resolution .PSD, .XCF or .SVG source files.
My complete license information can be found on my flickr site at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/steveczajka.
(there are many variants to this type of license)
Images I use from others are fully attributed in each blog post (or on the image itself), so please read and understand the creative commons license system at: http://creativecommons.org/. My approach is to share as much as I can where possible.
Interested in having some custom digital arts / calligraphy work done for your company or a gift for a friend / loved one? Maybe some website graphics, corporate certificates, album cover designs, poems, lyrics, business logos? Send me an email and I can zip back a quote asap. I can send you high quality images that are professionally printed on high quality photo paper and optionally framed.
Get in touch with me by posting a comment on my blog or send me an email: steveczajka at hotmail dot com. I respond to everyone. I greatly appreciate your feedback. I post new pieces each week, and you can follow these via RSS, Twitter, YouTube, flickr, or an email subscription (click Get Updates below).
Enjoy, I leave you with some testimonials. Thanks so much for your comments... Each and every one. I greatly appreciate when someone takes the time out of their day to comment on my work!
My Testimonials (from my various social media properties)
Susan Murtaugh , Retired Artist, Chicago, Ill
I have always admired good calligraphers, and you are a great one.
Mark Lurz, Calligrapher responded:
Steve, this is a very nice piece [Circular Calligraphy Border]. I like your Gothic C and the Arabic look of the border. Together with the textured yellow background, it reminds me of the work of Wissam Shawkat as featured in the last issue of "Letter Arts Review".
Jeanet .. said:
Wow beautiful done!!
This is wonderful!!
Calliartist, Calligrapher said:
Jane Farr, Calligrapher responded:
Great work Steve!
Jane Farr, Calligrapher responded:
Congratulations on your blogiversary Steve! These letters are beautiful - so crisp!
Chirag D. Shah, Photographer said:
Awesome! I love what you've done with it!
THIS IS SO AWESOME THANK YOU FOR SHARING
Great job. Very beautiful
... Great inspiration, Thank you!
...Great use of textures.
Molossus, who says Life Imitates Doodles said:
Calliartist, Fine Artist said:
Thanks, Steve, for taking the time to explain.
Archer10 (Dennis) SLOW said:
Great work on both, well done. Have a good Canada Day and keep smiling.
Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Real Magic - Contest : CHAIR, and we'd love to have this added to the group!
Timba Limber said:
Nice work. "You Can Make Me Smile" :-)
Ate My Crayons said:
Great Gimp tutorials... Your site is wonderful.. some truly cool contributions for Gimp users.
Eddi van W. said:
...Great work Steve, thanks for linking your image of you using it!
Skyeshell, fine artist said:
Truly a wonderful piece of work. Nice tutorial Steve!
Rolf Steinort, Photographer, Open Source Podaster responded:
What a wonderful surprise, thank you very much! I very much like your combination of digital hand craft and digital editing. It's a bridge between both worlds and gets the best out of both.
Ray Ritchie, Calligrapher responded:
I love this, Steve! Wonderful lettering, and nice choice of photo, as well.
We'd love to have this added to the group! Awesome work! Thank you for choosing my texture & for showing me :)
Joan Gillmansmith said:
Jov. nak responded:
Super work ! Bravo
Jason Castle, Typographer responded:
Hope Rik [Rik Emmett, Musician] gets to see it. Great tribute and beautiful calligraphy. Thank you for sharing the memories and the art skills. Cheers!
Mark Lurz, Calligrapher, Toronto
Diane Iannuzziello, Calligrapher
Love it....this is absolutely beautiful Steve!!!
Karen Jewell, Calligrapher responded:
Awesome, emotional work, love to see it!
I think you sell yourself a bit short Steve, much appreciated anyway, thanks for the excellent blog...Phil (Perth-Western Australia)
Hi I have watched many tutorials about GIMP but YOU are now my favorite!
Beautiful work throughout your portfolio. Love the rugged detail in your lettering.
...The work looks excellent
Very elegant and neat...you are a master of it [calligraphy]
Very cool, Steve.
Very nice art work!
Very nice work, Steve. An award certificate the awardees can be proud of.
Very, very nice.
I'm not an easy person to impress, but this is nicely done.
Wow, that is Great. Love it
Great imagery and lettering, thanks for sharing this.
I really do like your work. I browsed your stuff and it looks great.
Love your tutorials Steve.Keep them coming
Awesome work, Steve! Good job!
Every single work of yours is just wonderful!
Giuseppe Salerno @beppeartz
@steveczajka great stuff!
Burwash, Calligrapher said:
It's so nice… all of it :)
That is freaking awesome.[Letters Interacting]
That [Solitude] is beautiful Steve. I love your calligraphy. The colors and flowers are great and I love the background. Kudos!
That [Solitude] is gorgeous and very professional looking.
Mónika Germann, Calligrapher said:
This work is truly inspiring ¡¡¡¡
Thank you ¡¡¡¡
Very nice composition Steve [Solitude], and congrats to another fine piece of artwork. I love this style.
[Angels and Demons] Love it, love it, love it!
[Twenty Third Psalm]I absolutely love your work and this is my favourite.
Great job! I love your works, specially "Gothic Textura Tall and Narrow"
Viewing your blog has my head spinning (and clicking) with possibilities. Thanks for the inspiration.
Alan Shapiro, Professional Photographer:
Great stuff +Steve Czajka Had a quick look around and like your style. I'm an advertising chief creative officer during the day and will add you to my resource file for the next time I have a need for handrawn letterforms. Will also share with my teams. Thanks.
[Digital Arts Package Design] Very nice work!
Kathy McCreedy, Artist
found on flickr, by steveczajka... lovely sentiment, written out beautifully!
[Letters Interacting] Stunning.
[Letters Interacting] Stunning
Great stream [flickr],inspiring work
These separate typefaces are all within the texutra family and they fit together, by mixing capitals, lower case letters, special characters, and even a new edition called swirls. All of these perfectly fit together.
Albion Europe ApS
Great work :-)
[Letters Interacting] very good work! Congrats!!
[May 2012 Calendar] Great work. Definitely punchy :)
[Letters Interacting] Excellent!
[Letters Interacting] powerfull letterings!
calliartist, Artist / Calligrapher
[Solitude] beautiful! I'm inspired!
Manuel Corradine, Typographer
[Letters Interacting] Very nice work!
[June 2012 Calendar] ...you have such a great eye for design.
[June 2012 Calendar] Beautiful work yet again.
[June 2012 Calendar] Everything I've ever seen of yours, starting with your Amber series has been a work of art.
that is jaw-droppingly beautiful. [Letters Interacting]
[September 2012 Calendar] So beautiful! i love the contrast between that soft, transparent text layer and the big white text.
[September 2012 Calendar] I love the shading, grungyness to the lettering in September.
[GIMP Magazine] The magazine is truly a work of art in itself!